SALT LAKE CITY — A verdict was given by a local leader in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Monday afternoon to excommunicate the founder of Ordain Women.
Ordain Women founder, Kate Kelly, learned about the decision through an email from Bishop Mark Harrison of the Vienna Virginia Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to a press release from an Ordain Women spokeswoman.
Kelly was called to a disciplinary council Sunday, but she chose not to attend and was instead in Salt Lake City with between 300 and 350 people at a vigil held outside the LDS Church Office Building and at a nearby park.
She released a statement in regards to Monday's decision.
"The decision to force me outside my congregation and community is exceptionally painful," the statement read. "Today is a tragic day for my family and me as we process the many ways this will impact us, both in this life and in the eternities. I love the gospel and the courage of its people. Don’t leave. Stay, and make things better."
The Ordain Women group was organized with a website, challenging leaders and the LDS Church’s all-male lay clergy and seeks ordination for women to the priesthood.
Ordain Women provided the Deseret News a copy of the letter from Harrison to Kelly, which can be read here.
Contributing: Whitney Evans and Tad Walsh